Firstly Stresemann is successful in ending the crisis – the new currency, the Rentenmark, was quickly accepted and it even helped the Government to knock off some of its debt. Although the government’s expenditure was cut drastically and 700,000 people became unemployed, the success of the Rentenmark induced sympathy from the Allies and resulted in the establishment of the Dawes Committee – this was very important for Germany as for the next five years reparations paid were fixed in accordance with the country’s ability. As a chancellor Stresemann also called off the ‘passive resistance’ in the Ruhr. He saw that the conflict would only result in degraded dealings with the French. This decision upset the Right, who saw it as giving in to the French, however more importantly it showed that Stresemann was prepared to take difficult political decision and resulted in positive economic integration between Germany and the Allies.
Evaluate his role as foreign minister.
Stresemann, unlike many German nationalists, recognized the real causes to the collapse of the economy. The Dawes Plan which was agreed in April 1924 was a great success as it did everything Stresemann set out to do – it encouraged co-operation and peace between Germany and the Western powers and it even improved relations between Germany and France since reparations were regularly being paid. This was in Germany’s interest because it was the key to restoring the nation as a great power economically. In addition Germany received a lot of capital from abroad (USA) and the economy was in no way weakened. The Dawes Plan did perhaps make Germany too dangerously dependant on USA and its economic power and stability, however for the time it was the correct thing for Stresemann to do – he could not have foreseen the depression in 1929.
How successful was he – do you agree with his appraisal of his own achievements by 1929?